Introduction xvii
psychological and so­cio­log­i­cal under­pinnings of religious identity. Far from
simplistic conceptions and cultural skepticism of the validity of religious con-
versions, the authors provide a review of how religious faith can be used by
inmates for identity creation and management, as well as for adaptive coping
to difficult life circumstances. In Chapter 2, Perrin and colleagues provide an
insightful summary of how faith can be used to promote crime desistance ­ after
release from prison. Although certainly this is not the first study of religion
and desistance, it is among the first to focus on religion and desistance for
sex offenders.
In Chapter 3, Moreno and Kerley provide an overview of legislation and
case law that govern the practice of faith in U.S. prisons. Now more than
ever, prisoners enjoy a broad range of religious rights, including access to
religious texts, meeting space and time for worship and study, accommoda-
tion for dietary restrictions, and accommodation for most religious rituals. In
Chapter 4, Hallett and Bookstaver pres­ent a fascinating case study of Prisoners
of Christ (POC), which is a faith-­based correctional treatment organ­ization.
The organ­ization was ­under contract with the Florida Department of Correc-
tions to provide inmate ser­vices at low cost, but was sued by the Council for
Secular Humanism/Center for Inquiry for violation of Florida’s “Blaine Amend-
ment.” The resulting ­battle served as an exemplar for the ­legal, po­liti­cal, and
moral issues surrounding faith-­based prison programs. In Chapter 5, Skot-
nicki pres­ents a nuanced historical and theological discussion of the core phi-
losophy and goals of criminal justice systems. He argues, rather convincingly
I think, that the simultaneous goals of incapacitation and correction are largely
unworkable, and certainly lacking in empirical evidence other­wise.
Part 2 is entitled Religion in Prison in the United States. The papers in this
part include quantitative, qualitative, and ­legal analy­sis of several impor­tant
issues in the practice of prisoner faith and faith-­based programs. In par­tic­u­
lar, many authors explore how religiosity impacts a broad range of outcomes
in the prison context. In Chapter 6, ­ Meade and Bolin use a nationally repre-
sentative sample of inmates in state and federal facilities to study the impact
of religiosity on institutional misconduct. Although most studies of religion
and behavioral outcomes in prisons have focused on minor-­ and medium-­
range violations, the authors ­ here expand the analy­sis to consider violent
crimes. In Chapter 7, the focus shifts from religion in adult prisons to reli-
gion in juvenile detention facilities. Lanza-­Kaduce, Lane, and Benedini use
data from the Florida Faith and Community-­Based Delinquency Treatment
Initiative to explore ­ whether religion operates as a protective ­ factor against
prisonization, which has implications for positive inmate adjustment, decreases
in disciplinary reports, and recidivism ­after release. In Chapter 8, Leary pro-
vides results from her qualitative study of an ex-­offender college scholarship
program created by Charles W. “Chuck” Colson, founder of Prison Fellow-
ship Ministries. She uncovers key situational and contextual ­factors that
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